NewsCovering Louisiana


Oakdale inmate sentenced for sending hoax letters to US Senators

Posted at 4:02 PM, Apr 21, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-21 17:02:10-04

A federal inmate in Oakdale who was found guilty of mailing hoax letters in 2016 to US Senate Post office boxes has been sentenced.

50-year-old Clifton Lamar Dodd was sentenced to 21 months in prison followed by 3 years of supervised release, for mailing the hoax letters. Dodd was found guilty at his trial in July 2021 by a federal jury in Lafayette.

According to information from the US Attorney's Office, on May 2, 2016, personnel at the United States Senate mail facility received four suspicious mailed envelopes, each containing a white powdery substance. Each envelope bore a return address of FCI Oakdale, and each listed a different inmate as the purported sender.

The United States Capitol Police's Hazardous Response Unit responded and confirmed that the white powder was talcum powder. In addition to the talcum powder, each letter contained a note scrawled in all caps on a small scrap of paper that stated, "MY BOSS MADE ME DO THIS." On the back of each note was the name of four different inmates, all of which were housed at FCI Oakdale. U.S. Capitol Police and agents from the FBI and Bureau of Prisons began an investigation into the origin of the letters.

Agents interviewed the inmates whose names were listed as senders of the letters and learned that Dodd had sent one of the inmates threatening notes and bragged about getting the inmate removed from the prison yard.

FBI submitted the hoax letters to its crime lab for forensic evaluation and found one of Dodd's fingerprints on the outside of one of the envelopes.

After being found guilty last year, Dodd faced a penalty of up to five years in prison, a $250,000 fine, or both. Sentencing had been set for October 28, 2021.

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